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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by Venatore on September 07, 2018, 02:51:34 PM »
Of course your Italian crow is much more sociable!
V.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by GeordieBorn on September 07, 2018, 01:13:32 PM »
Yes like Venatore,I always went by that or a similar saying, but evidence of my own eyes tells me it is simply not true (well at least most of the time here).  Perhaps it refers to carrion crows only? This site gives a nice guide to the crow family, which includes rooks. Not only do we see 50 or more at times, some of them (very few) are not hooded crows, I shall now try to identify what they are, but they are smaller and often squabble with the hooded crows.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by Venatore on September 07, 2018, 11:47:43 AM »
In response to Levi’s puzzlement I remember once hearing
‘If you see crows, them is rooks and if you see a rook that be a crow’
Supposedly rooks are flock birds and crows solitary!
V.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by GeordieBorn on September 07, 2018, 11:28:42 AM »
I'm no Orni, but it is a bit like Linseeds Tits... Here they go missing in summer after nesting and like you the crows (ours are mainly hooded) also go. I suspect it is the heat and an abundance of food further up the mountains where they reside in summer to keep cooler. At the moment they are all fighting over the walnut trees as most such as the crows, magpies and jays seem to love the nuts.... Storing up for winter I guess.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by levissima on September 07, 2018, 09:08:49 AM »
Can you ornithologists settle something for me? In Montefino we have crows or rooks, not sure which. In winter and spring they are a real nuisance, they perch on my TV areal, and make a racket and a hell of a mess. I don’t see them during summer, when the pigeons take over. Do they migrate somewhere else or are they still about but just not nesting or bringing up young?

P.s. I’ve just recently noticed they are back but not in large numbers yet.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by popinjaykev on September 07, 2018, 07:49:06 AM »
Yes I had my annual flypast on Wednesday probably 60 or more - they are on there way back to Africa and unfortunately it is a sign that summer in Italy is over for them this year. I always get excited when I see them like this and it makes me so happy.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: Bee Eater birds
« Last post by Brush Strokes on September 06, 2018, 08:01:02 PM »
Been hearing these birds and seeing them from a distance at our house for sometime now, but never close enough to appreciate the colours. However the house I have been working on this week, they are flying around much lower, but also perching on nearby trees, giving plenty of time to admire these fine creatures.  :)
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: What have you seen today then?
« Last post by Rustychain on August 27, 2018, 10:05:22 PM »
The young ones & the adults look totally different...
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: What have you seen today then?
« Last post by GeordieBorn on August 27, 2018, 05:26:28 PM »
It may be the bad picture, but it had a very distictive yellow and a black band collar, but I'm only going from info from the web. To me it looked very young. Nothing like the >1M black looking guys we see very often here.
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Nature. Flora and fauna / Re: What have you seen today then?
« Last post by Rustychain on August 27, 2018, 04:38:32 PM »
I'm pretty sure that a young Western Whip Snake Geordie. The adults tend to be black around here. By the way, it's generally the Grass snakes & other 'water' snakes that play dead; these Whip snakes are as fast as greased lightening & will clear off at any possible opportunity.

By chance, I came across a recently road-killed Asp viper whilst out on my bike yesterday. Lovely looking creature, but even 'dead' vipers need to treated with caution... Some hapless bloke in America earlier this year came across a rattlesnake in his garden, went to fetch his machete, promptly chopped its head off then went to pick up the *bits* for disposal when, rather surprisingly, the thing bit him. I seem to remember he had a week in hospital to think about the rather unlikely chain of events that he'd unwittingly been party to. Talk about having the last laugh.  ;D
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